“The feeling of making vulnerable people feel supported and like they can trust you is magical.”

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Your care work is an endlessly fulfilling vocation

Not only are there a number of social care career paths you can follow, there are also real opportunities for you to progress and broaden your skills, experience and knowledge. Here are just a few key roles in adult social care and where they could take you.

Care management and progression roles

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Care home practitioner

Many care homes in Scotland have both support workers and a more advanced role called a care home practitioner. By progressing into this role, you could be taking on extra responsibility like:

  • contributing to the assessment of care and support needs for people living in the care home
  • taking more of a lead role developing care plans and acting as a key worker for one or more people
  • having a qualification at a minimum of SCQF level 7, for example SVQ Social Services and Healthcare at SCQF level 7 or HNC Social Services.

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Supervisors are experienced care workers with responsibilities to match. That could range from the supervision of other support workers to ensuring they are confident following policies, procedures and best practice. If your career progresses towards supervisor, then you will complete an additional supervisory qualification.

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Care Service Manager

The care service manager makes sure everyone in their core team has the training and support they need to provide high quality care. They will find themselves overseeing the quality of all support, leading the care planning process, and being the first point of contact for families. In addition, they will be expected to lead multi-disciplinary work with other health and social care professionals. They also have overall responsibility for health and safety within the service.

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Specialist Care Co-ordinator

This role allows you to focus on a specialist area within the care environment. For example, you may wish to specialise in critical areas as wide-ranging as dementia, autism and end of life care to mental health and substance misuse. It’s the specialist care co-ordinator’s responsibility to coordinate every aspect of care for a specific specialism.

Working in social care provides valuable experience which could help you to gain a place in further education, such as studying towards a degree in adult nursing or social work.

Nurse in social care

Once you choose a career in adult social care, there are other qualifications you can take in, for example, nursing or even physiotherapy that allow you to pursue ambitions to practice as a nurse in social care. Social care work gives you this incredible platform to broaden your skills and horizons.

As a nurse in adult social care you have a vital role in helping individuals and their families understand information about their diagnoses, treatment and health as well as how this fits with the care they are receiving. You’ll also learn how to carry out different types of clinical procedures and respond to each patient’s physical, clinical and emotional needs. Find out more here.

Social Worker

The career paths you could take are much broader than you might expect. A career in adult social care is a fantastic platform to progress and gain new qualifications whilst working. At some point in the future you could be working towards qualifications in social work and then excelling as a social worker. Find out more here.

“You can progress in the service if you show you want to learn, and you are passionate about what you do. It’s a hugely rewarding profession to get into.”